Durbin stirs US market for mishandling rollout of EMV cards

Sen. Dick Durbin has blasted the card network-dominated group that sets the standards for EMV cards, accusing it of mishandling the rollout of more secure credit and debit cards, lacking transparency and refusing, at the expense of retailers, to promote PIN authentication.

Durbin, a longtime crusader against the major credit card companies, wrote a March letter demanding that EMVCo, the group that sets standards for the chip technology, explain its governance and decision making in light of the snags that EMV cards have run into since their introduction in 2015.

He said the transition to EMV chips in cards in the US has been “plagued by problems,” such as merchants not being able to use EMV card readers because of a backlog in the software certification process and consumers facing longer wait times at retail counters.

EMVCo, founded in 1999 by Visa and MasterCard, is now run by six companies: American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa, Japanese payment network JCB and Chinese payment network UnionPay.

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